The ongoing controversy surrounding Manchester United boss Louis Van Gaal shows no signs of letting up heading into Tuesday night’s away match at Newcastle.
Newcastle will be looking to take advantage of the turmoil ahead of the match, at St James’ Park, and hopefully begin their slow and painful climb out of the relegation zone.
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A win against Man Utd could see Newcastle escape the drop zone if other results go in their favour.
The Toon have had a dreadful run of form of late and reversing it against a visiting side who seem to be slowly but surely winning again could be a difficult task
Fans will be encouraged however as the BBC reports Swansea and England midfielder Jonjo Shelvey will join Newcastle in a £12m deal to bolster the squad.
Newcastle have had a horrible run of form lately, falling victim to three straight Premier League losses before being knocked out of the FA Cup against Watford.
It’s been mid-December since Newcastle were able to win. Since then, their vulnerability, even at home, has been shown by a defeat to Everton and a draw against lowly Aston Villa.
Fabricio Coloccini is set to be a last minute fitness decision after coming off the pitch in the FA Cup loss.
The home side will be without Florian Thauvin, who is suffering from an ankle complaint, and Kevin Mbabu, who has a thigh problem.
On a more positive note, Jack Colback returns to the Magpies side after overcoming a hamstring issue.
Manchester United recently managed to scrape through their third round FA Cup tie against Sheffield United with a Wayne Rooney penalty in injury time.
The visitors have come in for much criticism this season due to their conservative style of football, and it will be interesting to see if the visitors show any signs of change on Tuesday evening.
Even former Man Utd player Michael Owen waded into the row, telling ESPN:
People are surprised at how bad they have been playing but we have been covering them on the television for some time now and that was a normal performance against Sheffield United.
“You go to Old Trafford and you are not entertained like you used to be. And that is a serious problem when you are a club like Manchester United.
“The players are virtually being strangled in many ways
Man Utd have had Bastian Schweinsteiger sidelined by a knee problem sustained against Sheffield United.
The visiting side will also be short in defense, with Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones all ruled out.
United player Ashley Young will make a probable return to the starting XI and will look to impress after falling out of favour this year.
United have been good in recent times away at Newcastle and are favoured to win Tuesday’s encounter.
Away losses in the Premier League, including recent defeats to Stoke and Bournemouth, have shown that Man Utd can be beaten in the Premier League.
In order for Newcastle to take anything from this contest they will need to show more inspiration than in their recent run of defeats, however.